2013 World Forum on the Diaspora Economy: Time for a New Economic Paradigm

Date: Friday, June 14, 2013

Location: Trusteeship Chamber, UN headquarters, New York

Attended by: Candace Tang, Nora Crossnohere, Alyssa Strasser, Imam Yashruti, Janice H.W. Wong, Marli Kasdan

 By Candace Tang

With the capacity of Diaspora Economy to advance the agenda of the United Nations on Financing for Development, remarks on the Global Diaspora Economy have been invited during of opening session.

Permanent Representative of Republic of Benin to the UN and Chair of the Group of Least Developed Countries, H. E. Mr. Jean-Francis Regis Zinsou began the vibrant discussion by emphasizing the important role of Diasporas in the international society. “What we do today is crucial for the high-level panel meeting on migration this coming October.

Diaspora Economy has the potential to drive trade and investments between host countries and countries of origin,” H. E. Mr. Jean-Francis Regis Zinsou pointed out. “Creating an international observatory of the migration program will help us assure the potential for growth through worldwide investments.” The Philippines mission responded to the forum by recognizing itself as one of the prime nations that have started addressing Diaspora economy as a major policy-making concern.

“The way our government’s foreign service looks into the need of protection for oversea labors suggests that we have put Diaspora economy in priority. Our relation with our foreign citizens is not subordinated to domestic economy,” declared H. E. Mr. Libran N. Cabactulan, Permanent Representative of the Philippines to the United Nations.

Reaching out to Diaspora members by linking to their countries of origin and fostering financial linkage can lead to an innovative economic paradigm of future. However, migrations and Diaspora discussions must be viewed as a two-way street, long-term conversation. Ms. Joyce Moy, Executive Director of The CUNY Asian American/Asian Research Institute, credited community development in New York City to the economic contribution from migrants to host countries. “Developing countries have a lot to offer. They possess tremendous innovation potential because of their short of resources. Countries of origin must understand their value in the dialogue.”

H.E. Koki Muli Grignon, Deputy Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Kenya to the UN, also urged hosting countries to “establish a platform for Diasporas to connect the hosting countries.” The lack of residential status and recognition usually serves as a significant barrier to the integration of Diasporas and hosting countries.

Launching initiative on creating prosperous Diaspora economy, the forum also approached to important voices of private sector missed from previous discussions. As new technologies, such as mobile banking and internet services, are introduced to international, regional, and local markets, Diasporas can be brought closer to home countries and have notable influence on home economy.

Edited By: Wayne Dean Doyle

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